"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”– Charles W. Eliot
Someone recently asked me which books have had the most impact on me as an adult. There have been so many that I found it difficult to choose just one. After a few days of hard thinking, here is a list of seven:
Jonathan Livingston Seagull - by Richard Bach - first read in 1970. This is the story of overcoming the struggle for enlightenment and freedom. It introduced me to a new way of looking at life, personal growth, and overcoming limits.
Think and Grow Rich - Napoleon Hill - first read in 1975. This is a classic of personal success. It introduced me to Hill's 14 principles of his philosophy of achievement, which I have tried to apply in my life. Ultimately, this was the beginning of an adventure that led me to meeting many interesting people, reading many insightful books, and formulating my personal philosophy of life.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People - Stephen Covey - first read in 1990. This book is excellent at clarifying the relationship between internal and external success. It has really helped me clarify and keep focused on personal values. I continue to refer to it.
The Book of Questions - Gregory Stock - first read in 1992. I bought this book at the same time I met my wife, Karen. We discussed every question over the course of our first few months together. The things we learned about each other allowed us to know each other better and resulted in a great marriage (26 years and counting).
Your Money or Your Life - Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez - first read in 1993. This book changed my thinking about the relationship between money and our lives and started me thinking differently about the role of money in my life. It provided the basis for how I live my financial life and the core beliefs that I use in my financial planning business.
The Seven Stages of Money Maturity - George Kinder - first read in 2004. This book shaped my entire approach to helping people live more meaningful and purposeful lives (while living strong financial lives).
The Power of Intention - Wayne Dyer - first read in 2010. This book (along with several others by Wayne Dyer) introduced me to many useful concepts about the importance and power of living an intentional life and helped me become more intentional in my own life.